New Delhi: As India ramps up COVID-19 vaccinations, UNICEF India has signed a USD 15 million agreement with Crypto Relief to procure an estimated 160 million syringes to support the Government of India’s national vaccination drive.
Under the agreement, UNICEF India will procure Re-Use Prevention (RUP) syringes from syringe manufacturers across the world through a global tendering process. To maintain quality, only WHO Pre-Qualified manufacturers will be asked to participate in the tender. Based on the global tender results, UNICEF will place orders with eligible bidders across the globe. The syringes are expected to be delivered between September 2021 and January 2022.
“India’s COVID-19 vaccination drive is one of the largest in the world aiming to vaccinate over 994 million people above the age of 18 years. In this massive endeavor, as many syringes as vaccines are required to keep up the fight to contain the pandemic,” said Dr Yasmin Haque, UNICEF India Representative. “We are bringing UNICEF’s expertise in procuring and delivering syringes to support India to fast-track vaccinations. Containing the pandemic will also help prevent the disruptions children are facing in education, in accessing health, routine immunization and nutrition services, along with ensuing safety and protection concerns.”
The initiative builds on UNICEF’s global efforts to stockpile, transport and deliver a billion syringes to countries to support COVID-19 vaccinations. This procurement will add to the ongoing efforts by the Government of India to secure the maximum number of vaccine doses and syringes to fast-track the COVID-19 vaccination drive in the country. Currently, the Government of India has administered over 570 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines and the syringes will be helpful in continuing present efforts.
India is the second country to cross the 570 million mark in 216 days after China.
“Crypto Relief’s aim is to help India fight the pandemic and strengthen its public health infrastructure. This partnership with UNICEF has given us an opportunity to help the Government of India meet the need for 160 million syringes and aid the Government in its vaccination drive,” said Sandeep Nailwal, Founder of Crypto Relief. “We are dedicated to addressing gaps in the Indian Public Health infrastructure by catalyzing capital towards areas like Scientific Research, Vaccine Awareness, District Health Systems Approach, Augmentation of Health Centres, Training and Capacity Building of Health Care Workers.”
The Re-Use Prevention (RUP) syringes being procured by UNICEF India get locked after a single use and help to prevent misuse, and therefore prevent the spread of infectious diseases.